No News Of Navies Burnt At Seas…

“No News Of Navies Burnt At Seas;

No Noise Of Late Spawn’D Tittyries;

 

No Closet Plot Or Open Vent,

That Frights Men With A Parliament:

No New Device Or Late-Found Trick,

To Read By Th’ Stars The Kingdom’s Sick;

No Gin To Catch The State, Or Wring

The Free-Born Nostril Of The King,

We Send To You; But Here A Jolly

Verse Crown’D With Ivy And With Holly;

That Tells Of Winter’s Tales And Mirth

 

That Milk-Maids Make About The Hearth;

Of Christmas Sports, The Wassail-Bowl,

That Toss’D Up, After Fox-I’-Th’-Hole;

Of Blind-Man-Buff, And Of The Care

That Young Men Have To Shoe The Mare;

Of Twelf-Tide Cakes, Of Pease And Beans,

Wherewith Ye Make Those Merry Scenes,

Whenas Ye Chuse Your King And Queen,

And Cry Out, ‘Hey For Our Town Green!’–

 

Of Ash-Heaps, In The Which Ye Use

Husbands And Wives By Streaks To Chuse;

Of Crackling Laurel, Which Fore-Sounds

A Plenteous Harvest To Your Grounds;

Of These, And Such Like Things, For Shift,

We Send Instead Of New-Year’s Gift.

–Read Then, And When Your Faces Shine

With Buxom Meat And Cap’Ring Wine,

Remember Us In Cups Full Crown’D,

 

And Let Our City-Health Go Round,

Quite Through The Young Maids And The Men,

To The Ninth Number, If Not Ten;

Until The Fired Chestnuts Leap

For Joy To See The Fruits Ye Reap,

From The Plump Chalice And The Cup

That Tempts Till It Be Tossed Up.–

Then As Ye Sit About Your Embers,

Call Not To Mind Those Fled Decembers;

 

But Think On These, That Are T’ Appear,

As Daughters To The Instant Year;

Sit Crown’D With Rose-Buds, And Carouse,

Till Liber Pater Twirls The House

About Your Ears, And Lay Upon

The Year, Your Cares, That’s Fled And Gone:

And Let The Russet Swains The Plough

And Harrow Hang Up Resting Now;

And To The Bag-Pipe All Address,

 

Till Sleep Takes Place Of Weariness.

And Thus Throughout, With Christmas Plays,

Frolic The Full Twelve Holy-Days.” – Robert Herrick

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